The seventh annual BronzeLens Film Festival (BronzeLens) was host to over 5000 attendees from across the United States, Europe, the Caribbean and Africa. During the course of four days over 50 films were screened including ‘Legends of Ska’, the documentary about ska, the predecessor musical genre which gave birth to reggae.
Additional films screened included Atlanta premieres of Russ Parr’s Ringside, Issa Rae’s HBO Series Insecure; Ava DuVernay’s and Oprah Winfrey’s Queen Sugar and; Deborah Riley Draper’s Olympic Pride, American prejudice.
Juried films in their respective categories, other noteworthy industry leaders and festival supporters were honored during the BronzeLens Awards at SCADShow. Categories included the best in Feature, Documentary, International Film, Short, Student Film and Web Series as well as Best Actress and Best Actor.
A total of six films and two actors received prestigious 2016 BronzeLens Awards. Other BronzeLens Award honorees were BronzeLens Founder’s Award honoree Curley Dossman, President, Georgia Pacific Foundation and BronzeLens Chairman’s Award honoree Letty Ashworth, Director Global Community Affairs, Delta Air Lines, Inc.
In addition Olympic Pride, American Prejudice (USA) directed by Deborah Riley Draper was selected for the BronzeLens 2016 Audience Award. The voting was cast by audience members after each screening via cell phone technology, BronzeLens Viewer Analytics (BVA) designed by Gary Vause.
2016 BronzeLens Award Winner Highlights
Legends of Ska, (USA, Jamaica, Canada) directed by Brad Klein won for Best International film.
Synopsis: Travel on a tropical journey from the birth of Jamaica’s music to the end of the island’s innocence. Without Ska, there is no Reggae.
Cast: Monty Alexander, Cannonball Bryan and Prince Buster (RCS Editor’s note: Ska legend Prince Buster passed away yesterday at the age of 78 #RIPPrinceBuster)
Decatur, Georgia native Dorian Missick won Best Actor for his role in 9 RIDES (USA), directed by Matthew A. Cherry.
Synopsis: An Uber driver gets life changing news on the busiest night of the year.
Cast: Dorian Missick, Omar J. Dorsey and Robinne Lee
Award-winning actress and producer Constance Ejuma was awarded Best Actress for her role in Ben and Ara (USA), Directed by Nnegest Likke.
Synopsis: Religious and cultural tensions escalate when an African Islamic woman has an affair with an agnostic man.
Cast: Joseph Baird, Constance Ejuma and Akuyoe Graham
Olympic Pride, American Prejudice (USA) directed by Deborah Riley Draper won for Best Documentary. Entertainment Partners provided Riley Draper with a Movie Magic package for the win.
Synopsis: In 1936 when 18 African-American athletes participated in the Berlin Olympic Games, history forgot all except one. This is the story of the other 17.
Cast: Lonnie Bunch, Anita DeFranz, Harry Edwards, Carl Lewis and Isaih Thomas
Best Student Film
Director and producer Armani Martin won in the Best Student Film category for Deus ex Machina (USA) and was awarded $500 by ASPiRE Television and her short will be featured on their network.
Synopsis: An earnest boy must fight for his life after oppression confronts him and his friends on their way to school.
Cast: Patrick K. Walker, Terayle Hill and Derek Russo
Destined (USA), directed by Qasim Basir won for Best Feature. Entertainment Partners provided Basir with a Movie Magic package for the win.
Synopsis: Destined tells the parallel stories of Sheed and Rasheed as they explore the idea of destiny as well as how the smallest incident can manifest itself into a life changing event.
Cast: Cory Hardrict, Jessse Metcalf and Zulay Henao
Best Short sponsored by BET was awarded to UGLY (USA), directed by LeRon Lee.
Synopsis: Ugly is a film about self-esteem and the laws of attraction in an urban environment. The story is told through a coming-of-age love story..
Cast: Devon Moyd, Andrea-Rachel Parker and Jamal Steven DeFrietas
Best Web Series
Cream x Coffee directed by Nakia Stephens, Maya Carr, Shiquita Williams won for Best Web Series.
Synopsis: “Cream x Coffee” follows the love story of an accidental interracial couple. When Dionne, a Pro-Black Activist falls for Ryan, a charming White Guy, her entire idea of Love is flipped upside down.
Cast: Danielle Maner, Artrece Johnson and Amaris L. Samuel
Best of Festival
Destined (USA), directed by Qasim Basir won for Best of Festival.
PHOTOS: Zeriba Media
About the BronzeLens Film Festival
Founded in 2009, The BronzeLens Film Festival of Atlanta, Georgia is a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing national and worldwide attention to Atlanta as a center for film and film production for people of color. Its mission is twofold: to promote Atlanta as the new film Mecca for people of color; and to showcase films and provide networking opportunities that will develop the next generation of filmmakers. Since its inception the BronzeLens Film Festival has evolved as one of the most comprehensive film festivals for filmmakers of color in the United States. Visit www.bronzelensfilmfestival.com for more information regarding the BronzeLens Film Festival.